Maria Servedio (left) and former UNC undergraduate John Powers (right) are authors of an article in PNAS (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences), titled “Evolution of sexual cooperation from sexual conflict”.  Along with Russell Lande (Norwegian University of Science and Technology) and Trevor Price (University of Chicago), they show how male displays that exploit preexisting biases in females to elicit extra investment in the brood can resolve evolutionary into a cooperative system where the display is necessary for females to invest optimally. In this way displays may become evolutionarily trapped, potentially accounting for the very common phenomenon of display after pairs have already formed. Read more >>

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